Dudley announces bid to become city on Black Country Day

Dudley marked Black Country Day by announcing a bid for city status.

Town crier Ian Jones made the announcement
Town crier Ian Jones made the announcement

Bosses at Dudley Council revealed the authority is putting the borough forward to become a city as part of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations next year.

The bid was launched officially in Dudley town centre on Black Country Day and shouted loud and proud by town crier Ian Jones.

Civic dignitaries were also in attendance including the Mayor of Dudley, Councillor Anne Millward.

Councillor Patrick Harley, leader of Dudley Council, said: “We are tremendously proud of our borough and we have huge ambitions for our future.

“From our medieval Domesday book reference back in 1086, not to mention the millions of years of geological history, we have a past that most cities across the world could only dream of and of which we are very proud.

“But we’re also looking to forge a bright new future.

The Black Country flag flies at Dudley Castle on Black Country Day

“We recognise there is work to do in that regard. But we have a billion pound regeneration programme which is coming to life as we speak to change the landscape of this fantastic place with new developments our people can be proud of.

“From this day we will work hard to pull together the full details of the bid, which will be submitted before the December deadline later this year.”

Councillor Anne Millward, the Mayor of Dudley, said: “There is no more fitting day than Black Country Day for us to announce our bid for city status and we are very confident we have the credentials needed to be successful.

The announcement was made on Black Country Day

“Hopefully on Black Country Day next year we will be celebrating as Dudley City, the capital of the Black Country.”

Ministers are inviting bids for city and Lord Mayor (or Provost) status, with entries needing to be in by the start of December this year.

There are no set numbers for the amount of new cities that will be crowned, with it dependent on the strength of the entries received.

The borough lost out on a bid for city status in 2012 and at the time council chiefs and business leaders admitted that more work needed to be done.

Dudley factfile

• A proud borough which dates back to the Domesday book

• The birthplace of the industrial revolution, boasting a world-renowned glass making heritage

• More than £1 billion worth of regeneration programmes are well underway in Dudley from Midland Metro to a university campus

• Around one million visitors every year to nationally and globally recognised tourist attractions

• A population of 300,000 – larger than Newcastle, Preston and Lancaster – and more than three times the size of other cities such as Worcester, Lincoln and Bath

• A make-up similar to other cities – Stoke, Bradford and Canterbury are all made up of separate towns

• A global Geopark with hundreds of sites of unique world importance as well as a historic Castle and nationally renowned zoo

• Home of the Black County Festival – a celebration of everything that makes this region unique

• Submitting the bid for city status on December 8 2021 as part of the Queen’s Jubilee

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